Wednesday, September 23, 2015

What we don't know about this "vote no" group

Posted By on Wed, Sep 23, 2015 at 10:52 AM

click to enlarge Laura Carno making her pitch for people to vote against the city's sales tax increase.
  • Laura Carno making her pitch for people to vote against the city's sales tax increase.
IACE Action - CS, a 504(c)4 organization that doesn't have to reveal its donors, is opposing Mayor John Suthers' .62 of a percent sales tax hike on the November 3 ballot.

IACE Action is run by Laura Carno, a political operative who ran Steve Bach's successful campaign for mayor in 2011. IACE, or I Am Created Equal, provided thousands of dollars worth of in-kind donations for the El Paso Freedom Defense Committee, the issue committee largely responsible for the successful recall of Democratic Senate President John Morse in 2013.

IACE has mounted a website that contains a video explaining why people should vote "no."

It has not filed a campaign finance report yet for the November election. It did file two reports for the April city election. One reported no donations or spending. The other reported one donation of $3,452 from IACE Action, and spending to a Highlands Ranch company for digital media and to a St. Paul, Minn., company for robo calls.

Beyond that, voters can't know who's pumping money into the organization. From the IACE Action - CS website:
Thank you for supporting IACE Action. IACE Action is organized as a non-profit organization under section 501(c)4 of the Internal Revenue Code. IACE Action will engage in issue advocacy and grassroots lobbying to further its core purposes. There are no limits on the amounts that may be contributed to IACE Action by an individual, corporation, union, or trade association. However, IACE Action does not accept donations from foreign nationals. IACE Action policy is to not provide the names of its donors to the general public.
In the video, Carno makes a one and a half minute pitch opposing the tax, saying that sales tax hits the poor and elderly the hardest and stressing the city spends a quarter billion dollars a year.

She urges voters to ask City Council what it's done to make city government more efficient. "When you're done calling City Council, call the mayor," she says. "Ask him why $250 million isn't enough.... Every dollar they spend is a dollar you and I earned."

Anti-tax activist Douglas Bruce also is opposing the tax increase and has created a website called

The only group created so far in support of the tax hike is Springs Citizens Building the Future, which we reported on here.

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